Even the healthiest relationships can experience ups and downs. From job-related stressors to communication challenges, there are countless factors which can affect partnerships, families and work. By acknowledging the issue and confronting it head-on, you can choose a healthy, proactive approach to getting back on track. Here are some strategies you can implement for solving relational issues.
Oftentimes, people tend to squabble about a few select issues or perhaps even one problem on which they’re divided. Identify what these problems are and work towards an agreeable solution calmly. Keep in mind that it may take many discussions to get to that point. On the other hand, if it seems like you’re fighting about everything, one or both of you may need to refine your communication skills.
It can be challenging to put aside your pride and acknowledge shortcomings, but no one is perfect. Identifying what you can fix in the relationship is a good starting point towards mutual happiness. Concentrate your energy on what’s in your power to change, whether that’s to be more realistic in your expectations, communicate openly or simply be precise about what you need.
Excessive anger is the catalyst for hurtful comments and arguments which can be difficult to recover from. One way to diffuse a situation is to avoid casting blame during a disagreement. Speak your mind by saying “we” or “us” to prevent casting blame solely on the other person. And if someone needs some time to cool off before revisiting the topic, allow them to have space temporarily.
When little acts go unnoticed, people may begin to feel undervalued. However, taking the time to express gratitude for the other person’s contributions is a good way to remind one another why you make such a great team, family, couple, etc.
Sometimes hurdles are just too difficult for two people to overcome on their own. In these cases, counseling can help. By seeking out a therapist who specializes in relationships, you can learn to improve communication skills and work through challenges with the help of a non-judgmental, impartial third party.
Dr. Corey Pieper, licensed psychologist, will be seeing patients beginning June 18 at the Onamia and Isle Mille Lacs Health clinics. Call (320) 532-3154 to request an appointment.